A couple years ago, when I was still an in store loss prevention associate, I was on my routine patrol of the store I was working in. It was a Friday afternoon and I was working the closing shift. I figured it would be a good night since this was the first Friday since school had let out. This time of year the shoplifting is always a little higher since there are more people in the store. As I made my way through the apparel section of the store, I made sure to check that the clothing security devices we had were affixed properly to the high dollar purses we carried. I made my rounds and then decided to get on the cameras for a little while.
A couple hours went by and there wasn’t much activity. It was really shaping up to be a boring Friday night. About three hours before closing time I noticed a male enter the store and immediately approach the high end purse selection. I found it a little odd since he was alone. He began handling the purse, but I quickly realized that he was more interested in the clothing security device than with the purse itself. I watched as he began pulling at the device. That didn’t work. He started twisting and pulling harder. That still didn’t work. I was beginning to get a little amused at his struggle. There’s only one reason someone would attempt to defeat a security tag, so I knew I’d end the night with an apprehension.
After quite a few minutes of struggling with the device, he seemingly gave up and walked out of the store. A little disappointed, I left the LP office and went inspect the tag to ensure there was no damage to it. There wasn’t, so I continued on with my shift. About 15 minutes later, I see the same individual come back into the store, only this time he was carrying a pair of sheers. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing! Did this guy actually think that no one would notice him walking through a clothing store with a large pair of cutters? At this point, I decided it was probably time to contact the police since he was most likely going to steal the purse at this point.
Just as I thought, he approached the purses and without skipping a beat, clipped off the clothing security device like it was a row of hedges. I watched in disbelief in just a minute’s time, he now had access to well over two thousand dollars’ worth of product. Without a care in the world, he grabbed almost the entire stock and headed for the door. I approached him outside, and to my surprise, he was very cooperative. Once back in the office, while waiting for police, I began to ponder about the sheers that he had. They had a sticker from the home improvement store on them, so I called my LP buddy that was working. He told me he hadn’t noticed anyone fitting my guy’s description but double checked his cameras for me. Sure enough, he had stolen the clippers too when he had left my store!
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